Steal The Day Back

Steal The Day Back

“Steal The Day Back” was written and recorded for my own solo project, while working on my first solo album.

The song was recorded along with (now, already released songs) “Night”, “Come” and “Alinear”, to name a few, and was meant to appear on my second or third album.

However, after forming a new band (Ninth) we were in need of tracks, (for our first EP), and I ended up using these recorded songs from my solo album, and re-do the vocals with our new singer.

In fact we had to re-record the vocals with several singers, but that’s another story.

The song was picked out to represent Norway at the “Midem” music festival in Cannes.

And we got several festival invitations, and events out of it. Like the “Norwegian Wood” festival (which we had to cancel due to a tour in the US).

And perhaps the most meaningful, a performance at Grieghallen in Bergen, where we were asked to perform the song in order to highlight and honor young people with mental health issues.

 

Mirror Release Me

Mirror Release Me

“Mirror Release Me” is based around a clavinet kind of riff, an instrument I was hooked on in my early teens.

I used to hunt down every old funk recording I could find (especially the lo-fi ones) and wrestled for years with mastering those clavinet arrangements on the guitar.

After a while, it became a part of the way I play, not only on funky stuff, but on many things.

The song itself was basically composed in transit. Meaning on the bus, or while walking to (and from) the studio.

The whole arrangement and lyrics was ready to go before I started to play and record it.

Visual art by James Roper

 

Fire

Fire

“Fire” is one of many guitar pieces I’ve entertained myself with, since my teenage years.

Many versions and improvisations have been recorded over the years.

This version, was recorded live in my living room after a couple of beers (on a nice summer evening).

After the guitar, I grabbed the cello and improvised three tracks on top of it, and that was that.

I make it sound simple, but the structure, lyrics and melody was worked on for many years.

It’s a song that might be “challenging” for some, but I really like it.

I love its atmosphere, and its attitude, as it is pretty resilient and stout.

 

Ishtar Rise

Ishtar Rise

“Ishtar Rise” is the second and final part of the “work” I started on with previous release: “As We Speak”.

Huge parts of the improvisations was recorded live with bass and drums.

It’s always fun to do something different with a traditional instrument. Earlier this year I used a banjo to play sitar sounds, and the real sitar as a Russian plucking instrument.

This time it’s the mandolin that had to go east, getting dirty playing first fiddle in a middle-eastern impro situation. (I’ve always liked to use the mandolin on eastern stuff, but rarely get the opportunity to do so).

With me on the recording:

Bjørn Tore Kronen Taranger: Drums

Audun Havåg: Bass

 

As We Speak

As We Speak

“As We Speak” is the first song in a two-part piece. The final part will be presented next week.

The song was recorded with a mandriola (which is a 12 string mandolin, with bass strings)

I bought the mandriola when I was around twelve, from an old couple that had it for display at their cabin.

I remember they told me that it was very old, and that no one knew where it came from.

It’s age shows.

But it has an amazing sound! It’s playability is the best I’ve ever encountered from an instrument like this, and it’s intonation is superb.

But it has sadly become quite frail over the years, and I don’t dare to use it for anything else than studio work these days.

Even though I’ve used many mandolins over the years, I prefer to take off four strings on the old mandriola and use it as a mandolin when possible, because of it’s rich and vibrant sound.

 

The Run

The Run

This song was composed and recorded for one of my solo projects called “Ninth Project”.

(I had nine different projects at the time, this was number 9).

I recorded enough material for an album, and contacted producer Yngve Sætre, to help me finish up the songs, in his “Duper studios”.

While we were working on the mixes, my main band “Woo” broke up, and I decided to make a band of this “Ninth Project”, which I called “Ninth”.

The vocals were re-recorded with the new “Ninth” vocalist Stein Hevrøy, and sent to be mixed in LA by producer/mixer Andrew Scheps.

After a while, Stein quit the band and the vocals had to be re-recorded again, this time by Per-Helge Lande. The song was again sent to LA, and mixed by Andrew.

After a while Per-Helge quit as well. I tried 4-5 different singers after that, before I shut down the band.

So, it feels kind of good to bring these songs “home” in this project as I was originally singing them myself when I recorded them.

It is also one of the main reasons for doing this project in the first place.

So many songs, carefully made (through blood sweat and tears) for bands that, soon enough, broke up. Which is quite normal in this business.

Anyway, it felt right to release them under my own name and with my own voice. That way, the music will not again be disrupted by singers with cold feet.

When that is said, I‘ve always loved the social side of music most. It’s what drove me.

I never really wanted to do anything solo. I love the camaraderie, laughs, arguments, achievements and support you get with a team, or simply from a bunch of good friends.

Life’s about people being together, in the end. Friendship is more important than musicality, even in the music business.

 

Raised, Embraced & Erased

Raised, Embraced & Erased

This versjon of the song “Raised, Embraced & Erased” started it’s life on a tour-bus in the US. Recorded on a battery driven micro studio, on the way to the next show (somewhere in Ohio).

Guitars and drums has obviously been re-recorded (several times) after that trip, but it’s all performed onto that original recording.

The roads are so straight in the US that for us Norwegians, the trip (from the east coast to the west) felt like standing still.

Try touring Norway, with our fjords and mountains, and you’ll see what I mean.